Friday, 29 May 2009

Orange cake and summer eating.

Tonight two American scientists came to our house for dinner.
I think their accents are funny.
They have trouble understanding mine.
It's silly, at school I was teased for my accent being too 'English' and 'posh', but to the rest of the world I might as well be wearing a kilt and swilling whisky.

It was really hot here today, round about 25°C.
Dinner was simple as mother had no time to shop or cook, because she came home straight from work with the Americans in tow.
As an impromptu starter, we had houmous with a dusting of paprika and a drizzle of olive oil, olives, vividly pink radishes, crusty baguettes and a pressed ham hock terrine.

As the 'main course' there were prawns with garlic, red chilli and finely shredded basil, fish done on the barbeque (which unfortuently managed to fall apart spectacularly) and potatoes baked in cream and shallots which contrasted rather oddly with the otherwise light meal, but in my defence I had no idea what was happening and was instructed to make something, anything, with the mountain of spuds that had arrived with the veg box on wednesday.

For dessert it was yet another concoction I managed to bluff my way through - a rosewater, almond and orange cake with a honey and orange syrup poured over it. Very similar to the orange and poppyseed one in fact, but better.
It was extraordinarily dumb of me to completely make up a recipe when I was supposed to be impressing guests. Ah well, it ended up being delicious so that's all that really matters I suppose. I have no idea what the measurements were, but I basically creamed together butter and sugar (not too much sugar, as it would have been hideously saccharine with the syrup), added two egg yolks, ground almonds, rosewater, the juice of an orange + the zest. Flour was folded in and then the egg whites were beaten and stirred in gently. The syrup was the juice of one orange, half a lime, muscavado sugar and honey.

Annoyingly, there was an absence of any icing sugar in the house, so I had to serve the cake all covered in holes from where I had poured in the syrup, with no way to disguise them. Ugh.
It's an ugly looking creation, but one that tastes so, so gooooood.

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